November 08, 2011

Standard Employment Contract for Seafarers: What You Should Know?

How many among us seafarers fully read our contract before signing it? Let’s admit that we rarely read the contents of it but I’m sure most of us only look at the number of months and the salary amount on it. After that we usually never spend time knowing other information stated on that contract. That is a habit that we need to change because that contract will protect and help us in times of difficulties. The POEA or Philippine Overseas Employment Administration provides a standard employment contract for seafarers. On its Memorandum Circular No. 10, Series of 2010, the POEA amended the standard terms and conditions governing the overseas employment of Filipino seafarers on-board ocean-going ships.

I agree that it is time consuming and boring to read those lengthy information on the contract. So I took some sections from POEA’s Memorandum Circular No. 10, Series of 2010 that might catch your attention. Below are Section 20(A) or COMPENSATION AND BENEFITS FOR INJURY OR ILLNESS and Section 32 or SCHEDULE OF DISABILITY OR IMPEDIMENT FOR INJURIES SUFFERED AND DISEASES INCLUDING OCCUPATIONAL DISEASES OR ILLNESS CONTRACTED. These sections fully describe the compensations you will receive if you got ill or injured while working on-board the ship. By reading it you will know how much your employer will pay you during that work-related accident or illness.


SECTION 20. COMPENSATION AND BENEFITS


A. COMPENSATION AND BENEFITS FOR INJURY OR ILLNESS

The liabilities of the employer when the seafarer suffers work-related injury or illness during the term of his contract are as follows:

1. The employer shall continue to pay the seafarer his wages during the time he is on board the ship;

2. If the injury or illness requires medical and/or dental treatment in a foreign port, the employer shall be liable for the full cost of such medical, serious dental, surgical and hospital treatment as well as board and lodging until the seafarer is declared fit to work or to be repatriated. However, if after repatriation, the seafarer still requires medical attention arising from said injury or illness, he shall be so provided at cost to the employer until such time he is declared fit or the degree of his disability has been established by the company-designated physician.

3. In addition to the above obligation of the employer to provide medical attention, the seafarer shall also receive sickness allowance from his employer in an amount equivalent to his basic wage computed from the time he signed off until he is declared fit to work or the degree of disability has been assessed by the company-designated physician. The period within which the seafarer shall be entitled to his sickness allowance shall not exceed 120 days. Payment of the sickness allowance shall be made on a regular basis, but not less than once a month.

The seafarer shall be entitled to reimbursement of the cost of medicines prescribed by the company-designated physician. In case treatment of the seafarer is on an out-patient basis as determined by the company-designated physician, the company shall approve the appropriate mode of transportation and accommodation. The reasonable cost of actual traveling expenses and/or accommodation shall be paid subject to liquidation and submission of official receipts and/or proof of expenses.

For this purpose, the seafarer shall submit himself to a post-employment medical examination by a company-designated physician within three working days upon his return except when he is physically incapacitated to do so, in which case, a written notice to the agency within the same period is deemed as compliance. In the course of the treatment, the seafarer shall also report regularly to the company-designated physician specifically on the dates as prescribed by the company-designated physician and agreed to by the seafarer. Failure of the seafarer to comply with the mandatory reporting requirement shall result in his forfeiture of the right to claim the above benefits.

If a doctor appointed by the seafarer disagrees with the assessment, a third doctor may be agreed jointly between the Employer and the seafarer. The third doctor's decision shall be final and binding on both parties.

4. Those illnesses not listed in Section 32 of this Contract are disputably presumed as work-related.

5, In case a seafarer is disembarked from the ship for medical reasons, the employer shall bear the full cost of repatriation in the event the seafarer is declared (1) fit for repatriation; or (2) fit to work but the employer is unable to find employment for the seafarer on board his former ship or another ship of the employer.

6. In case of permanent total or partial disability of the seafarer caused by either injury or illness the seafarer shall be compensated in accordance with the schedule of benefits enumerated in Section 32 of his Contract. Computation of his benefits arising from an illness or disease shall be governed by the rates and the rules of compensation applicable at the time the illness or disease was contracted.

The disability shall be based solely on the disability gradings provided under Section 32 of this Contract, and shall not be measured or determined by the number of days a seafarer is under treatment or the number of days in which sickness allowance is paid.

7. It is understood and agreed that the benefits mentioned above shall be separate and distinct from, and will be in addition to whatever benefits which the seafarer is entitled to under Philippine laws such as from the Social Security System, Overseas Workers Welfare Administration , Employees' Compensation Commission, Philippine Health Insurance Corporation and Home Development Mutual Fund (Pag-IBIG Fund).


SECTION 32. SCHEDULE OF DISABILITY OR IMPEDIMENT FOR INJURIES SUFFERED AND DISEASES INCLUDING OCCUPATIONAL DISEASES OR ILLNESS CONTRACTED.

HEAD
Traumatic head injuries that result to:
1. Aperture unfilled with bone not over three (3) inches without brain injury
Gr. 9
2. Unfilled with bone over three (3) inches without brain injury
Gr. 3
3. Severe paralysis of both upper or lower extremities or one upper and one
lower extremity
Gr. 1
4. Moderate paralysis of two (2) extremities producing moderate difficulty in movements with self-care activities
Gr. 10
5. Slight paralysis affecting one extremity producing slight difficulty with self-care
activities
Gr. 10
6. Severe mental disorder or Severe Complex Cerebral function disturbance or
post-traumatic psychoneurosis which require regular aid and attendance as to
render worker permanently unable to perform any work
Gr. 1
7. Moderate mental disorder or moderate brain functional disturbance which
limits worker to the activities of daily living with some directed care or
attendance
Gr. 6
8. Slight mental disorder or disturbance that requires little attendance or aid and which interferes to a slight degree with the working capacity of the claimant
Gr. 10
9. Incurable imbecility
Gr. 1

FACE
1. Severe disfigurement of the face or head as to make the worker so repulsive as to greatly handicap him in securing or retaining
Gr. 2
2. Moderate facial disfigurement involving partial ablation of the nose with big scars on face or head
Gr. 5
3. Partial ablation of the nose or partial avulsion of the scalp
Gr. 9
4. Complete loss of the power of mastication and speech function
Gr. 1
5. Moderate constriction of the jaw resulting in moderate degree of difficulty in chewing and moderate loss of the power or the expression of speech
Gr. 6
6. Slight disorder of mastication and speech function due to traumatic injuries to jaw or cheek bone
Gr. 12

EYES
1. Blindness or total and permanent loss of vision of both eyes
Gr. 1
2. Total blindness of one (1) eye and fifty percent (50%) loss of vision of the other eye
Gr. 5
3. Loss of one eye or total blindness of one eye
Gr. 7
4. Fifty percent (50%) loss of vision of one eye
Gr. 10
5. LagopthaImos, one eye
Gr. 12
6. Ectropion, one eye
Gr. 12
7. Ephiphora, one eye
Gr. 12
8. Ptosis, one eye
Gr. 12
Note: (Smeller's Chart - used to grade for near and distant vision).

NOSE AND MOUTH
1. Considerable stricture of the nose (both sides) hindering breathing
Gr. 11
2. Loss of the sense of hearing in one ear
Gr. 11
3. Injuries to the tongue (partial amputation or adhesion) or palate-causing defective speech
Gr. 10
4. Loss of the three (3) teeth restored by prosthesis
Gr. 14

EARS
1. For the complete loss of the sense of hearing on both ears
Gr. 3
2. Loss of two (2) external ears
Gr. 8
3. Complete loss of the sense of hearing in one ear
Gr. 11
4. Loss of one external ear
Gr. 12
5. Loss of one half (1/2) of an external ear
Gr. 14

NECK
1. Such injury to the throat as necessitates the wearing of a tracheal tube
Gr. 6
2. Loss of speech due to injury to the vocal cord
Gr. 9
3. Total stiffness of neck due to fracture or dislocation of the cervical spines
Gr. 8
4. Moderate stiffness or two thirds (2/3) loss of motion of the neck
Gr. 10
5. Slight stiffness of the neck or one third (1/3) loss of motion
Gr. 12

CHEST-TRUNK-SPINE
1. Fracture of four (4) or more ribs resulting to severe limitation of chest
Gr. 6
2. Fracture of four (4) or more ribs with intercostal neuralgia resulting in
moderate limitation of chest expansion
Gr. 9
3. Slight limitation of chest expansion due to simple rib functional without myositis or intercostal neuralgia
Gr. 12
4. Fracture of the dorsal or lumber spines resulting severe or total rigidity of the trunk or total loss of lifting power of heavy objects
Gr. 6
5. Moderate rigidity or two thirds (2/3) loss of motion or lifting power of the trunk
Gr. 8
6. Slight rigidity or one third (1/3) loss of motion or lifting power of the trunk
Gr. 11
7. Injury to the spinal cord as to make walking impossible without the aid of a pair of crutches
Gr. 4
8. Injury to the spinal cord as to make walking impossible even with the aid of a pair of crutches
Gr. 1
9. Injury to the spinal cord resulting to incontinence of urine and feces
Gr. 1

ABDOMEN
1. Loss of the spleen
Gr. 8
2. Loss of one kidney
Gr. 7
3. Severe residuals of impairment of intra-abdominal organs which requires regular aid and attendance that will unable worker to seek any gainful employment
Gr. 1
4. Moderate residuals of disorder of the intra-abdominal organs secondary to trauma resulting to impairment of nutrition , moderate tenderness, nausea, vomiting , constipation or diarrhea
Gr. 7
5. Slight residuals or disorder of the intra-abdominal organs resulting in
impairment of nutrition, slight tenderness and/or constipation or diarrhea
Gr. 12
6. Inguinal hernia secondary to trauma or strain
Gr. 12

PELVIS
1. Fracture of the pelvic rings as to totally incapacitate worker to work
Gr. 1
2. Fracture of the pelvic ring resulting to deformity and lameness
Gr. 6

URINARY AND GENERATIVE ORGANS
1. Total loss of penis
Gr. 7
2. Total loss of both testicles
Gr. 7
3. Total loss of one testicle
Gr. 11
4. Scars on the penis or destruction of the parts of the cavernous body or urethra interfering with erection or markedly affecting coitus
Gr. 9
5. Loss of one breast
Gr. 11
6. Prolapse of the uterus
Gr. 13
7. Great difficulty in urinating
Gr. 13
8. Incontinence of urine
Gr. 10

THUMBS AND FINGERS
1. Total loss of one thumb including metacarpal bone
Gr. 9
2. Total loss of one thumb
Gr. 10
3. Total loss of one index finger including metacarpal bone
Gr. 10
4. Total loss of one index finger
Gr. 11
5. Total loss of one middle finger including metacarpal bone
Gr. 11
6. Total loss of one middle finger
Gr. 12
7. Total loss of one ring finger including metacarpal bone
Gr. 12
8. Total loss of one ring finger
Gr. 13
9. Total loss of one small finger including metacarpal bone
Gr. 13
10. Total loss of one small finger
Gr. 14
11 . Loss of two or more fingers. Compensation for the loss of use of two (2) or more fingers or one (1) or more phalanges of two or more digits of a hand must be proportioned to the loss of the hand occasioned thereby but shall not exceed the compensation for the loss of a hand:
a. Loss of five (5) fingers of one hand
Gr. 6
b. Loss of thumb, index fingers and any of 2 or more fingers of the same hand
Gr. 6
c. Loss of the thumb, index finger and anyone of the remaining fingers of the same hand
Gr. 7
d. Loss of thumb and index finger
Gr. 8
e. Loss of three (3) fingers of one hand not including thumb and index
finger
Gr. 9
f. Loss of the index finger and anyone of the other fingers of the same
hand excluding thumb
Gr. 9
g. Loss of two (2) digits of one hand not including thumb and index finger
Gr. 10
12. Loss of ten (10) fingers of both hands
Gr. 3

HANDS
1. Total loss of use of both hands or amputation of both hands at wrist joints or above
Gr. 1
2. Amputation of a hand at carpo-metacarpal joints
Gr. 5
3. Amputation between wrist and elbow joint
Gr. 5
4. Loss of grasping power for small objects between the fold of the finger of one hand
Gr. 10
5. Loss of grasping power for large objects between fingers and palm of one hand
Gr. 10
6. Loss of opposition between the thumb and tips of the fingers of one hand
Gr. 9
7. Ankyclosed wrist in normal position
Gr. 10
8. Ankyclosed wrist in position one third (1/3) flexed or half extended and/or severe limited action of a wrist
Gr. 11

SHOULDER AND ARM
1. Inability to turn forearm (forearm in normal position-supination)
Gr. 11
2. Inability to turn forearm (forearm in abnormal position - pronation)
Gr. 10
3. Disturbance of the normal carrying angle or weakness of an arm or a forearm due to deformity of moderate atrophy of muscles
Gr. 11
4. Stiff elbow at full flexion or extension (one side)
Gr. 7
5. Stiff elbow at right angle flexion
Gr. 8
6. FIaiI elbow joint
Gr. 9
7. Pseudoarthrosis of the humerus with musculospiral or radial paralysis
Gr. 6
8. Ankylosis of one (1) shoulder, the shoulder blade remaining mobile
Gr. 9
9. Ankylosis of one shoulder, the shoulder blade remaining rigid
Gr. 8
10. Unreduced dislocation of one (1) shoulder
Gr. 8
11. Ruptured biceps or pseudoarthrosis of the humerus, close (one side)
Gr. 11
12. Inability to raise arm more than halfway from horizontal to perpendicular
Gr. 11
13. Ankylosis of the shoulder joint not permitting arm to be raised above a level with a shoulder and/or irreducible fracture or faulty union collar bone
Gr. 10
14. Total paralysis of both upper extremities
Gr. 1
15. Total paralysis of one upper extremity
Gr. 3
16. Amputation of one (1) upper extremity at or above the elbow
Gr. 4
17. Scar the size of the palm in one extremity
Gr. 14

LOWER EXTREMITIES
1. Loss of a big toe
Gr. 12
2. Loss of a toe other than the big one
Gr. 14
3. Loss of ten (10) digits of both feet
Gr. 5
4. Loss of a great toe of one foot + one toe
Gr. 10
5. Loss of two toes not including great toe or next to it
Gr. 12
6. Loss of three (3) toes excluding great toe of a foot
Gr. 10
7. Loss of four (4) excluding great toe of a foot
Gr. 9
8. Loss of great toe and two (2) other toes of the same foot
Gr. 9
9. Loss of five digits of a foot
Gr. 8
10. Loss of both feet at ankle joint or above
Gr. 1
11 . Loss of one foot at ankle joint or above
Gr. 6
12. Depression of the arch of a foot resulting in weak foot
Gr. 12
13. Loss of one half (1/2) metatarsus of one (1) foot
Gr. 8
14. Loss of whole metatarsus or forepart of foot
Gr. 7
15. Tearing of achilles tendon resulting in the impairment of active flexion and extension of a foot
Gr. 12
16. Malleolar fracture with displacement of the foot inward or outward
Gr. 10
17. Complete immobility of an ankle joint in abnormal position
Gr. 10
18. Complete immobility of an ankle joint in normal position
Gr. 11
19. Total loss of a leg or amputation at or above the knee
Gr. 3
20. Stretching leg of the ligaments of a knee resulting in instability of the joint
Gr. 10
21 . Ankylosis of a knee in genuvalgum of varum
Gr. 10
22. Pseudoarthrosis of a knee cap
Gr. 10
23. Complete immobility of a knee joint in full extension
Gr. 10
24. Complete immobility of a knee joint in strong flexion
Gr. 7
25. Complete immobility of a hip joint in flexion of the thigh
Gr. 5
26. Complete immobility of a hip joint in full extension of the thigh
Gr. 9
27. Slight atrophy of calf of leg muscles without apparent shortening or joint lesion or disturbance of weight-bearing line
Gr. 13
28. Shortening of a lower extremity from one to three centimeters with either joint lesion or disturbance of weight-bearing joint
Gr. 13
29. Shortening of 3 to 6 cm with slight atrophy of calf or thigh muscles
Gr. 12
30. Shortening of 3 to 6 cm with either joint lesion or disturbance of weight-bearing joint
Gr. 11
31 . Irregular union of fracture with joint stiffness and with shortening of 6 to 9 cm producing permanent Iameness
Gr. 9
32. Irregular union of fracture in a thigh or leg with shortening of 6 to 9 cm
Gr. 10
33. Failure of fracture of both hips to unite
Gr. 1
34. Failure of fracture of a hip to unite
Gr. 3
35. Paralysis of both lower extremities
Gr. 1
36. Paralysis of one lower extremity
Gr. 3
37 . Scar the size of a palm or larger left on an extremity
Gr. 14
NOTE:  Any item in the schedule classified under Grade 1 shall be considered or shall constitute total and permanent disability.

SCHEDULE OF DISBILITY ALLOWANCES

IMPEDIMENT GRAD
IMPEDIMENT
1
US$ 50,000
x
120.00%
2
US$ 50,000
x
88.81%
3
US$ 50,000
x
78.36%
4
US$ 50,000
x
68.66%
5
US$ 50,000
x
58.96%
6
US$ 50,000
x
50.00%
7
US$ 50,000
x
41.80%
8
US$ 50,000
x
33.59%
9
US$ 50,000
x
26.12%
10
US$ 50,000
x
20.15%
11
US$ 50,000
x
14.93%
12
US$ 50,000
x
10.45%
13
US$ 50,000
x
6.72%
14
US$ 50,000
x
3.74%

Source: http://www.poea.gov.ph

You can also download the full memorandum circular here.

 
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